Photograph by Miami Beach Police Department via Getty Images.
All that "zombie" watercooler talk may have subsided, but doctors working with the Miami face-chewing victim revealed another bizarre twist in the case Tuesday: The man, now awake and alert, may have been shot twice by the police during the attack.
The Miami Herald reports that the homeless man, previously identified as 65-year-old Ronald Poppo, has two "mysterious" holes in his chest that may be the inadvertent work of officers dispatched to rescue him, according to a surgeon who operated on him. (His attacker, Rudy Eugene, was shot to death by police when he refused to stop the seemingly cannibalistic assault.) There was no word on the surgeon's comments from the Miami police as of Tuesday afternoon.
Poppo's doctors also told reporters that he lost his left eye and suffered serious brain damage, but is otherwise recovering. New photos of Poppo were released that show some improvement over the grisly viral images that were leaked soon after the attack, with scabs covering much of his face. It remained unclear how aware Poppo is of his macabre ordeal, but the Herald did note that he is alert enough to be following the Miami Heat’s berth in the 2012 NBA finals.
Poppo was attacked in a busy area of Miami over Memorial Day weekend. The incident sparked international notoriety in large part because of the apparent zombie-like nature of the attack, but Rudy Eugene’s autopsy showed no flesh in his stomach, indicating that he used his teeth to tear Poppo’s flesh, not eat it.